The Art Gear Guide  

The Art Gear Guide is your one stop shop for the most recent, up to date, honest reviews on all your favourite art supply products. 


Derwent Carry Bag

Derwent Carry Bag

Derwent Carry Bag 

A while ago I seen a review on Amazon from an individual stating that they really disliked this product due to the material being terrible, their bag had not lasted long with the material ripping and fraying. I have to say, I found this statement hard to believe because I have been buying Derwent products for such a long time now and been reviewing their products for approximate a year and a half; one thing that Derwent could never be accused of is shoddy workmanship in my opinion.

So I decided to buy the Derwent Carry Bag myself and check out this claim and also I thought it would be a fantastic item to review for you guys. I have had the Derwent Carry Bag since June this year (2017) and took it with me on my holidays to the Lake District here in the UK. So as I write this review I have had the bag six months. 

I have to say this before I continue with the review, due to my disability I am obviously unable to take the bag out with me into forrest's to sketch birds or out in the countryside to draw landscapes etc, however, whilst on holiday my daughter did borrow the bag and took it down to the river to draw or anywhere else they ventured. The bag perhaps has not been tested to it's fullest extent regarding the material quality, but I will get to this later in the review. 

Derwent Carry Bag Characteristics 

Before I get into the details of the Derwent Carry Bag, I would just like to mention that on occasions I have read comments from people regarding the bag and its limited capacity to hold pencils. I would like to make it clear that I am reviewing this bag purely on the basis as to how Derwent have intended the bag to be used, which is on the go, transferring your precious colored pencils from point A to B and somewhere in between whilst keeping them together and protected. A lot of people use the bag as a storage device when at home, which is absolutely fine and a fantastic idea, but it is in this use that people feel the bag does not hold an adequate quantity of pencils. 

The Derwent Carry Bag is slightly bigger than an A5 sketch book, the bag will not hold an A4 pad. The bag is made from a rugged material, similar to that of the old British Army style webbing, almost like a canvas material and the stitching throughout is well established. The bag is only available in one color and that is this beautiful Taupe, it actually makes sense that the bag is a neutral color as the last thing an artist wants out in the wild while try to capture the beauty of a bird or other wild animal is a bright red bag by their side. 

When you purchase the bag, inside you get three leaves, the leaves as Derwent call them, are canvas strips which clip into the bag and hold the pencils using individual elastic bands, with each band hold two pencils. The leaves are double sided and this allows for each individual leaf to hold comfortably, 44 pencils, 22 on each side.

Before opening the bag you will notice a small pocket on the outside of the bag, this allows for a sketch pad to be placed allowing for quick access if needed. On opening the bag, you will notice a mesh pocket, fastened with a zip on the front flap of the bag. This pocket allows for smaller items such as erasers, sharpeners, blending stumps and I also place my Derwent Water Brushes in this pocket, to be kept safe and from falling out of the bag the second you open it. Toward the back of the bag, on the inside of the back flap, there is a thick black elastic band which helps hold firmly in place your watercolor pads or sketch pads. 

On top of the bag you can see there is a handle, which splits in two allowing for the user to open the bag, but then reattaches both handles encased in a padded grip for comfort whilst carrying. If you would rather have your hands free and not carry the bag in this way, there is a detachable shoulder strap that comes with the bag. This is very comfortable thanks to the adjustable rubber pad, however it is worth mentioning that the bag with full contents is not very heavy.  

Derwent Carry Bag Contents

As you can see from my bag, I have my Derwent Artists, Derwent Graphitint and Inktense, as well as some Derwent Graphite pencils and their gorgeous Black and White range. Toward the very back of the bag I have also filled three sides of the leaves with my Winsor and Newton Brush Markers. Then inside the back flap, held firmly in place by the black elastic band I have two Derwent A5 Watercolour pads

Derwent Carry Bag Capacity

As I have mentioned, if you buy just the bag, you will get three leaves, this will allow for the bag to accommodate 132 pencils, plus whatever you place in the front pocket. Derwent also sell the leaves in sets of two separately, which I have added to my bag. Derwent say that five leaves is about the limit of the bag when filled with pencils, however, I think you may squeeze in six leaves. The reason I say this is because I have five leaves in my bag and it is a tight fit, however I have three sides of leaves filled with thick markers. 

But if we stick to Derwent recommendation of five leaves, this will allow your bag to carry 220 pencils, plus whatever else you place in the front pocket. If you recall at the beginning of this article I mentioned some people who use the bag as a general storage device for their pencils at home and say that a capacity of 220 pencils is not enough, I'd like to remind you what the bag is designed for. 

Of course you can use the bag to store your pencils at home, but when you are out and about, using the bag as Derwent have intended it to be used, I really think that 220 pencils is more than enough for even the finest colored pencil artists among us out in the wild. 

Derwent Carry Bag and Extra Leaves Cost

When I add pricing to my reviews I really try to find the very cheapest deals on Amazon for you guys, but it is always a good idea to look about elsewhere as you never know. 

If you go to Derwent's Online Shop, the Carry Bag on its own and the three leaves will cost £24.19 and for two extra leaves you will pay £6.20. However, if you are ever in the Lake District you must stop into Derwent's Museum and Shop as you are likely to pick up an excellent deal as well as an awesome tour of the Museum. 

On Amazon here in the UK however, the Derwent Carry Bag will cost you £12.84 and two extra Derwent Leaves will cost you £5.70

In the U.S. the Derwent Carry Bag will cost you $24.37 and two extra Derwent Leaves will cost $13.91. 

In Europe the Derwent Carry Bag will cost you €21.24 and two extra Derwent Leaves will cost €11.55


All in all I think the pricing of the Derwent Carry Bag is excellent, bearing in mind everything you get with the bag and I can say with my hand on my heart that the quality of the bag is first class. Also the really good thing about the bag is that over years of use, if the leaves become unusable, you can always replace them at a very low cost, but I think to be in this situation you would be talking years of use 

I personally would highly recommend this bag providing it is being used for it's intended purpose, of course the bag can be used as an excellent storage device for at home, so long as you don't get frustrated housing 220 of your 800 pencils, stay calm and remember it is a bag for transporting our beloved pencils when drawing or painting out and about. 

As always thank you so much for taking the time to read this review and don't for get you can see the bag being demonstrated over on The Art Gear Guide YouTube channel. I have always been of the opinion that providing both a written and video review should help to please most people, offering choice. 

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